In 2013, at the age of 85, LILY THOMAS won a landmark judgement under which members of India's Parliament and members of state legislative bodies, convicted of a crime or in jail, became ineligible to run for elections or hold an elected seat. Prior to this judgment, members of Parliament who were convicted but had filed an appeal could go about their regular business, including being elected and holding seats.


Lily was first known for petitioning in 1952 in the Supreme Court to amend the Representation of the People Act, 1951 in order to get declared Section 8(4) of the act as unconstitutional, eventually which was rejected by the Court then.


The UPA government had prepared an ordinance to nullify the judgment, but later reversed the stand under popular perception.

The law had far reaching effect when many influential politicians have seen their career in politics cut short.

Prominent congress leader has been disqualified & lost his membership from lok sabha because of a 2 year conviction --under Section 8 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951. Such a disqualification is enabled by Article 102 (1) (e) of the Constitution of India, which says a lawmaker can be disqualified under any law enacted by the Parliament.

The Representation of the People Act, 1951 further says the disqualified lawmaker stands disqualified even after their release from the jail.

"A person convicted of any offence and sentenced to imprisonment for not less than two years other than any offence referred to in sub-section (1) or sub-section (2) shall be disqualified from the date of such conviction and shall continue to be disqualified for a further period of six years since his release," says Section 8 (3) of Representation of People Act, 1951,

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